classic | mobile
Follow us on:
Follow us on Facebook  Share via Twitter  Share via LinkedIn

Hi-Tech Security Solutions Business Directory
Residential Estate Security Handbook 2018

Using biometrics to prevent financial crime
November 2017, Access Control & Identity Management, Integrated Solutions

Biometrics is about more than the fingerprint or retina terminal itself, it’s about storing data in forensically-signed databases, that is admissible in a court of law.

Wayne Olsen, Datacentrix security business unit manager.
Wayne Olsen, Datacentrix security business unit manager.

There’s no doubt that fraud in the workplace is a broad-ranging topic, but one of the most egregious kinds is surely financial fraud. It’s this type of fraud that directly hits the company’s bottom line. So let’s look at mitigating those cybercrime efforts that are directed at local organisations with financial crime as their primary strategy.

What is financially-motivated cybercrime?

Electronic fraud is really just the latest evolution of traditional crime. Many professional criminal syndicates have shifted their focus away from the old-world tactics of holding up banks, running black-market importing businesses or trading drugs, for instance. They’ve chosen an often far softer target: capitalising on the lack of security and stringent processes within many companies.

In recent years we’ve seen the art of social engineering become ever-more sophisticated, as fraudsters carefully gather data-sets from ‘helpful’ staff, building up this data to ultimately impersonate different parties. Armed with enough information, they may impersonate a supplier requesting that their bank details are changed; or they impersonate the CFO in requesting that payment orders are executed by his staff. Many have defined this kind of highly-targeted identity theft as ‘whaling’ – an evolved form of phishing.

The basics brilliantly

Many firms are investing tens of millions of rands in sophisticated security tools that deal with technical threats coming from all directions, but fail to effectively prevent financial losses because the basic processes are just not designed effectively.

Whatever the size of one’s company, in the finance department it is essential to segregate financial duties between different people. We often see firms stumbling due to a lack of basic rigour (such as mandating that a purchase order be checked with business unit managers before invoices are released for payment, or confirming that an employee has been fully off-boarded by implementing checks and balances across Payroll, HR, IT and other areas).

The solution

We’re generally familiar with the use of biometrics for basic, physical access and ‘time and materials’ record-keeping, but the opportunities for biometrics extend far further than this:

Each transaction can be biometrically-signed, so there is absolutely no doubt about who authorised a particular payment. With advanced biometrics solutions, full audit logs are created, tracing the journey of a particular transaction through its various stages of approval.

These audit logs can be introduced into a court of law if necessary, as they legally bind the actor (for example the financial administrator) to the transaction. This allows organisations to reach a level of certainty and accountability that was previously not possible with less-secure, password-based systems.

Irrefutable evidence

By positively connecting a physical person to each specific transaction, firms can eliminate the problems of passwords that are divulged or shared, or smartcards, tokens and one-time PIN numbers that can also be passed between individuals.

A biometrics approach can be used consistently across various enterprise applications – to deliver legally-valid transaction evidence, and essentially to act as an impartial witness to sensitive business transactions. By introducing this technology alongside policies (such as payment value thresholds for different members of staff), organisations can not only ensure that any fraud losses are traced back to particular individuals, but they can prevent fraud from happening in the first place.

For more information on Datacentrix’ fraud management offerings, please visit

  Share via Twitter   Share via LinkedIn      

Further reading:

  • Directory of access and identity management suppliers 2019
    November 2018, Access Control & Identity Management

  • Open source identity initiative
    November 2018, Access Control & Identity Management
    Industry-first open source identity initiative promises to eliminate vendor lock-in and reduce costs for governments around the world.
  • Significant differences in ­perceptions on state of digital trust
    November 2018, CA Southern Africa, Access Control & Identity Management, Security Services & Risk Management
    Nearly half of businesses admit to selling customer data, despite claiming data ­protection as paramount; consumer behaviour shows strong correlation between loss of business and lack of digital trust.
  • Trust but continually verify
    November 2018, Technews Publishing, This Week's Editor's Pick, Access Control & Identity Management, Integrated Solutions, IT infrastructure
    Hi-Tech Security Solutions looks at access and identity management and asks some industry players what ‘zero trust’ and ‘least privilege’ access means.
  • Physical/logical convergence
    November 2018, Technews Publishing, This Week's Editor's Pick, Cyber Security, Integrated Solutions, IT infrastructure
    The convergence between physical and logical (or cyber) security will be a game-changer because it will change the way we do everything, from planning to design and all the way to installation and maintenance.
  • Physical and logical convergence is a fact
    November 2018, This Week's Editor's Pick, Integrated Solutions, IT infrastructure
    Convergence, the next buzzword? A dated buzzword? Is convergence ­merely ­integration on steroids? What is convergence?
  • The expanding role of IT in access control
    November 2018, Technews Publishing, This Week's Editor's Pick, Access Control & Identity Management, IT infrastructure
    What role is IT playing in the world of physical access control and how far will its role expand in future?
  • Taking augmented identity to the world
    November 2018, Technews Publishing, This Week's Editor's Pick, Access Control & Identity Management, Integrated Solutions
    Hi-Tech Security Solutions spoke to Gary Jones, VP Global Channel and Marketing biometric access and time solutions) at IDEMIA (formerly Morpho) about his career with the company and its new vision of Augmented Identity.
  • A scan of fingerprint biometrics
    November 2018, Technews Publishing, Access Control & Identity Management
    Given the increase in the use of fingerprint technology in public and private organisations, as well as some recent announcements on the reliability or lack or reliability of certain types of sensors and algorithms in the fingerprint biometric market, Hi-Tech Security Solutions spoke to some of the leading fingerprint biometric vendors in the market to find out more about the state of this market.
  • BIMS set to change identity ­management
    November 2018, Technews Publishing, Access Control & Identity Management, Integrated Solutions, IT infrastructure
    Local biometrics integrator, Ideco Biometric Security Solutions, has announced that its Biometric Identity Management System (BIMS) has been launched to market.
  • Tracking biometrics into a brave new digital world
    November 2018, This Week's Editor's Pick, Access Control & Identity Management, Integrated Solutions
    The industry is increasingly transitioning from unimodal to more integrated multimodal biometric solutions for more accurate identity verification and faster real-time results.
  • Panasonic’s Face Recognition Server
    November 2018, Panasonic South Africa, Access Control & Identity Management, CCTV, Surveillance & Remote Monitoring, Products
    Panasonic has adopted deep learning technology in its face recognition products that overcomes the difficulties of conventional technologies.

Technews Publishing (Pty) Ltd
1st Floor, Stabilitas House
265 Kent Ave, Randburg, 2194
South Africa
Publications by Technews
Dataweek Electronics & Communications Technology
Electronic Buyers Guide (EBG)

Hi-Tech Security Solutions
Hi-Tech Security Business Directory (HSBD)

Motion Control in Southern Africa
Motion Control Buyers’ Guide (MCBG)

South African Instrumentation & Control
South African Instrumentation & Control Buyers’ Guide (IBG)
Terms & conditions of use, including privacy policy
PAIA Manual
    Mobile | Classic

Copyright © Technews Publishing (Pty) Ltd. All rights reserved.